Oh how I love the promise of a skein of yarn and all the possibilities!
My favorite gift to give for a new baby or a first birthday present is a knit teddy bear or doll. No plastic and all handmade, these can last parent, to child, to grandchild.
The bears belong to my boys and both have affectionately named them "Jon Bear" and the "Dollie" is one of a few I've made for my daughter. Dollies tend to get a lot of wear so this is the one that stays on the shelf. Her original, well loved, Dollie has had many tutu upgrades as well as a few hair replacement surgeries. My little nephew adores his bear and I've done several repairs to fix boo boos sustained from little boy rough housing. I always keep a bit of the leftover yarn in a little baggie in case of little accidents. Easy peasey!
**** The info: the teddy bears are Blue Sky Alpacas Bobbi Bear pattern. I used Blue Sky Alpaca organic cotton. There is also a Baby Bobbi Bear pattern essentially the same only knits up a bit smaller.
The doll pattern is from Knitted Toys written by Zoë Mellor and I knit this up in a cotton yarn as well.